New panel to tackle inter-ministerial tourism issues
New Delhi, March 15 : An Inter-Ministerial Coordination Committee (IMCCTS) chaired by the principal secretary to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh will facilitate resolution of issues related the development of tourism in India, Tourism Minister K. Chiranjeevi said in the Lok Sabha Friday.
In the three meetings of the committee since January, the panel has discussed facilitation of visas to foreign tourists, tourist visas on arrival and broad-basing of hospitality education, Chiranjeevi said in a written reply.
The minister said the committee was responsible for the introduction of the Agra-Jaipur Shatabdi Express and persuading 70 CBSE schools to offer broad-based hospitality and tourism education.
The panel campaigned for the lifting of the restriction of the two-month gap for foreign nationals to re-enter India - except in cases of Afghanistan, China, Iran, Pakistan, Iraq, Sudan, Bangladesh, foreigners of Pakistan and Bangladeshi origin and stateless persons.
The tourism ministry is looking to increase India's share of international arrivals to at least one percent from the existing 0.6 percent and create additional employment of about 2.5 crore in the sector both directly and indirectly, the minister said.